Raynaud's phenomenon and related vasospastic disorders

Vasc Med. 2021 Feb;26(1):56-70. doi: 10.1177/1358863X20983455.


Raynaud's phenomenon, which is characterized by episodic digital pallor, cyanosis and rubor upon exposure to cold environment or to stress, is relatively common, although the prevalence depends on the climate. Still, it is under-diagnosed, under-treated, and often confused with other conditions. Primary Raynaud's phenomenon (i.e., Raynaud disease) must be distinguished from secondary Raynaud's phenomenon (i.e., Raynaud syndrome) as long-term morbidity and outcomes differ vastly between the two conditions. Additionally, the practitioner must differentiate between Raynaud's phenomenon and related vascular disorders, such as acrocyanosis, pernio, and livedo reticularis. In this article, we review differences between the conditions and suggest an approach to diagnosis and treatment strategy for these disorders.

Keywords: Raynaud’s; acrocyanosis; livedo reticularis; pernio; vasospasm.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Raynaud Disease* / diagnosis
  • Raynaud Disease* / epidemiology
  • Raynaud Disease* / therapy